The First
The Monthly Newsletter of Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church
April 2020
Featured Forum Articles
African Forum : "Embracing Care-Mongering in the Age of COVID-19"
- Teresia Hinga

European Forum : "Development and Religion in the Times of COVID-19"
- Diego Alonso-Lasheras

North American Forum : "Moral Responsibility to Protect People in Prison from COVID-19" - Aline Kalbian
Asian Forum : "Another Worrisome Virus"
- James McTavish

Latin American and Caribbean Forum : "¡Tierra, en tus entrañas encomendamos su Espíritu!"
- María Cristina Ventura (Tirsa)

Junior Scholars Forum : "Othering the Other?: A Call for Moral Cosmopolitanism "
- Kristine Meneses

Virtual Tables
Response to the Sexual Abuse Crisis in the Catholic Church: Perspectives from Theological Ethics
 
On the 24 th  of February, we held our final  Virtual Table  meeting on Theological Ethics in the context of the Abuse Crisis before we were to gather together at the Gregorian University in Rome a couple of weeks later for the theological laboratory on this topic. We ended that online meeting excitedly: “see you in Rome!” Whilst we shared some concern about the COVID-19 situation, none of us could predict what was to come.
 
Each day following that meeting brought more news about the growing pandemic – travel restrictions, lock downs, and an emerging crisis in health care led to a number of participants in the Laboratory pulling out, and the organisers quickly adjusted the format to allow for online participation. Ultimately, the first week of March saw the Italian government close all schools and universities, which meant that the laboratory was cancelled.
 
Disappointing as this is, the Virtual Table methodology will allow us to continue our important work in this area in one way or another. We are pausing for now to allow us all to readjust to our local circumstances, and will re-animate this work when the time is right to do so.
In Memoriam
On March 20, 2020, social ethicist John Langan, S.J. passed away at the age of 79. He was Rose Kennedy Professor of Christian Ethics at the Kennedy Institute of Ethics and held the Cardinal Bernardin Chair in Catholic Social Thought at Georgetown University. John presented at the CTEWC conference in Padova on "Catholic Moral Theology and the War on Terrorism." His remarkable corpus addressed pressing issues from just war theory and human rights to capital punishment. The Berkley Center, where he served as a faculty fellow, has published a  memorial
African Regional Report
Forging a Global Policy to Resist the Threat of COVID-19 in Africa

Reminding us that the "virus knows no boundaries, races, nations, gender, or social status," Toussaint Kafarhire Murhula calls for global leadership and a humanist approach to ethics as the COVID-19 pandemic reaches developing countries. Read here .

Asian Regional Report
Moral Theology Seminar on Sexual Abuse

St. Albert’s College Ranchi, Jharkhand, organized the extended lectures of the Association of Moral Theologians of India (AMTI) on 29 February 2020 on the topic "Sexual Abuse: Crisis of Credibility, Accountability, and Responsibility." View a report from the seminar here .


Call for Papers for Asian Horizons

The September 2020 issue of Asian Horizons invites articles on “Artificial Intelligence: Theology and Ethics.”

Artificial Intelligence, the ‘theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages’ has been gaining greater attention in the recent decades, especially in the recent years. Artificial Intelligence may also be applied to ‘any machine that exhibits traits associated with a human mind such as learning and problem-solving.’ That is, Artificial Intelligence is concerned with ‘building machines that can act and react appropriately, adapting their response to the demands of the situation.’

Submissions are due by 1 August, 2020. View the full call for papers and a list of upcoming edition themes here.

European Regional Report
Reflection on COVID-19

Paolo Costa presents an actual reflection on COVID-19. He critically evaluates the pathos of fragility that prevails in the media today and shapes their sense-making efforts in this time of crisis. And he stresses the fragility of our society. View online or as a PDF (English and Italian).

Catherine of Siena College

We would like to invite new students to join our upcoming innovative on-line short courses at Catherine of Siena College and help us spread the word. This is a great opportunity to further develop your studies on gender and social justice, by studying conveniently where you are and at your own pace.  

Entirely taught online for 6 and 10 weeks, the courses "Interreligious Engagement for Justice and Peace" and "Gender in Islam" will broaden your perspectives on religion and gender related issues. All you need is a good internet connection and your laptop. More here .

Latin American Regional Report
Congresso Brasileiro do Teologia Moral

Del 24 a 26 de agosto de 2020 se realizará, en Sao Paulo -Brasil, el 43º Congreso Brasileiro de Teología Moral. con el tema: La moral del Papa Francisco: un Proyecto a partir de los descartados.  Programa completo.

En el último volumen de la Revista Perseita del presente año aparece un artículo de Andrei Zanon con el título "El principio de la alteridad de Lévinas como fundamento para la responsabilidad ética". Artículo completo.

La Universidad Católica de Argentina de Buenos Aires ofrece la publicación en línea de su revista de Teología núm . 130 (dic 2019).
El Dr. Agustín Ortega Cabrera

El Dr. Agustín Ortega Cabrera, misionero laico canario y profesor e investigador universitario en América Latina, con motivo de su reciente viaje a España hizo una ponencia sobre “La actualidad de Ellacuría, Mons. Romero y Francisco” en el Centro Loyola de Canarias (La Palmas de GC.) del que fue subdirector hasta su marcha a la misión. En su intervención ha presentado el libro “Ellacuría en las fronteras”, editado por la Universidad Jesuita Ibero de México. En esta publicación, el Dr. Ortega es coautor con un capítulo titulado: “Filosofía de la acción-formación social en el horizonte de la espiritualidad. Claves desde Ellacuría, Martín-Baró y los jesuitas mártires de la UCA”. Una presentación similar a la que ya pudo realizar en algunos centros universitarios de Lima, donde actualmente realiza su misión en Latinoamérica y dichas tareas docentes e investigadora.
North American Regional Report
Recent Publications Regarding COVID-19

Most of our educational institutions across North America have moved all courses online, and Catholic ethicists here are struggling with a steep learning curve as we teach classes from home, while homeschooling kids, and offering our skills to our wider communities wrestling with how to understand the ethical questions raised by Coronavirus. 

At Catholic Moral Theology CTEWC network member Jerry Beyer responds to Kelly Johnson’s essay analyzing the crisis from the perspective of the common good. Beyer builds on Johnson’s appeal to the common good with his own poignant appeal to solidarity. Both are worth reading and sharing in your own social media networks.

At the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University CTEWC network member David DeCosse presents “ Five Ethical Basics in the Face of the Coronavirus Pandemic. ” This is a brief and accessible piece that is perfect for sharing with non-specialists, including family members, friends, and students. For additional work on COVID-19 from the Markkula Center, visit here .

CTEWC co-chair Andrea Vicini reflects on our ethical commitments in a time of uncertainty in " Life in a Time of Coronavirus " for La Civilità Cattolica .

Meanwhile over at Crux, Marcus Mescher was interviewed by Charlie Camosy on how the former’s work on “cultures of encounter” can adapt to the Coronovirus call to social distancing.

Other Recent Publications

Marcus Mescher also reports on the 40th Anniversary of Oscar Romero's assassination, and the unfinished work of his legacy . Romero’s life calls us, Marcus writes, “to live out a faith filled with courage, compassion, and solidarity. To become a church that is genuinely of and for the poor. To have our hearts moved by those whose humanity is questioned, whose dignity is undermined, whose freedoms are constrained. And to work for a world that rights wrongs, heals wounds, and creates the conditions for each and all to freely and fully flourish in right-relationships.”